MILLIONS of retirees can get extra cash to help with energy bills this winter worth up to £600.
Anyone getting the state pension should have got the winter fuel payment by Friday, January 13 automatically.
But in some case they might not have got the money and will need to apply for it instead, or they could miss out on the extra help.
Winter fuel payments are a tax-free payment that comes from the government each year and is worth between £250 and £600 per household.
How much you get depends on your age and whether you get certain benefits, and getting the payment won't affect them.
Anyone who is eligible but doesn't get it automatically needs to apply by Friday, March 31.
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Winter fuel payments are usually made between November and December and January 13 is the latest day by which the money should have arrived.
The money is designed to help older people with the cost of heating their homes over winter, which has rocketed this year because of an energy crisis.
So it's worth checking you've received the extra payment.
The payment is made into the same account where you get benefits, allowance and state pension money paid.
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So you can check the account statements to see if the payment has been made between November and now.
Some who could miss out on the cash even though they are eligible are those who live abroad in Switzerland or another EEA country.
Others who might be missing out are those who have reached state pension age but have delayed claiming their state pension.
The Department for Work and Pensions said households don't need to be concerned as payments are still going out.
But if the payment hasn't been received by January 13, they should contact the Winter Fuel Payment Centre online or by phone.
You can make a claim by contacting the Winter Fuel Payment Centre either by post, phone or email.
The contact details will depend on where you live and a full list can be found on the gov.uk website.
You'll need the following information to hand.
- your National Insurance number
- your bank or building society details
- your BIC and IBAN numbers if you live in the EEA or Switzerland
- the date you were married or entered into a civil partnership (if appropriate)
You' also need to tell them if you were in hospital or residential home from June 27 to September 25, 2022.
Who is eligible for winter fuel payments?
Both the following need to apply to be eligible for winter fuel payments, according to gov.uk:
- you were born on or before 26 September 1955
You may still be eligible if you lived in Switzerland or another EEA country in that period, but you won't get the payment automatically and will have to apply.
The same goes for if you can prove a sufficient link with the UK, like having lived and worked here, or have family here, but were not living her in the qualifying week.
You won't get the payment if you live in the following countries though because of the warm weather there: Cyprus, France, Gibraltar, Greece, Malta, Portugal or Spain.
You won't get the payment if you are in hospital for more then a year getting free treatment and in some other circumstances.
You can find more about when you're not eligible on gov.uk.
How much can I get?
Because of the £300 cost of living payment top up, what you can get this year has changed.
For example, if you were born on or before September 25, 1942 and live alone – or with people who are not eligible for the payment – you can claim £600.
If you were born between September 26, 1942 and September 25, 1956 and you live alone you receive £500.
There are more details on exactly who earns what amount on the government website.
Your payment may also be different if you or your partner receives one of the following benefits:
- pension credit
- income-based jobseeker’s allowance (JSA)
- income-related employment and support allowance (ESA)
- income support
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The good news is that any money you get will not affect your other benefits.
All benefits, pensions and allowances are paid into an account, such as a bank account.
Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected]
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